Getting to know local non-profit leaders - Children's Advocacy & Protection Center

April 21, 2022

Over the next few weeks, the Catawba County United Way will be highlighting the executive and program directors of the CCUW's funded partner agencies for 2022. Every year, the CCUW looks to partner with local non-profits and help support their programs focused on improving the lives of those in need in the areas of education, financial stability and health.


This week - Adrienne Opdyke - Executive Director Children’s Advocacy & Protection Center. 

1. How long have you been with your agency and have worked with non-profits overall? 

I started working at the Children’s Advocacy and Protection Center in September of 2006 (15 years)  I was hired as the Victim Advocate.  In that role I also facilitated our Multidisciplinary Team and conducted forensic Interviews. I also stepped into the role of medical assistant when needed.   I became the Executive Director in October of 2015.  As we all know  the non- profit world you will always have multiple roles.  I still fill in as the Victim Advocate and Forensic Interviewer as needed.  I have only ever worked in non-profits. 

2. What drew you to your current position and this kind of work? 

When I graduated with a social work degree I knew that I wanted to work with children.  Early in my career I worked with runaway and homeless youth, treatment centers and group homes.   I was introduced to the Children’s Advocacy Center model when I hired as the Director of the Gingerbread House in Burke County in 1999. When I stared working in the CAC model in 1999 I knew instantly this is what I had been called to do and I have been  working in the CAC model ever since. 

3. What is the impact of your agency in our community?

The Children’s Advocacy and Protection Center works with over 300 children and their family a year when there has been a report of sexual and or physical abuse or exposure to violence. We provide forensic interviews, medical exams, therapy and advocacy.  We empower individuals through training and education like Darkness to light,  Child Safety Matters, and awareness through April Events.  Together with our community partners we work to coordinate a comprehensive team response to abuse and neglect. Focusing on reducing victim trauma.  

4. What does a good day at work look like? 

Really every day is a good day at work.  I am so thankful to the community leaders and community members for building such a solid foundation for this work in Catawba County.  Even when faces change in leadership or direct service work the commitment to this work remains the same.  I am so thankful for the CAPC staff and our community partners. 

5. The non-profit world can be stressful. What’s your favorite way to relax? 

Hang out with Chance and Tucker (our dogs), work in the yard, spending time with my mom

6. Do you have a favorite book/movie and why? 

My favorite book is a  green leather Bible with my name inscribed in gold lettering given as a gift from my mom when life was getting hard.   

  • Learn more about Catawba County United Way funded partners at THIS LINK